Friday, March 31, 2017                             8:00 PM       Jones Hall
Sunday, April 2, 2017                                2:00 PM       Jones Hall


  Photo: Simon Pauly

Joshua Dennis, tenor (Jaquino)

The Minneapolis Star Tribune praises tenor Joshua Dennis’ performances, exclaiming, “he made his sincerity believable, and his voice, a robust tenor with baritonal heft, rose to the high climaxes with ringing, ardent bravado.”

This season, he makes his company debut as Alfredo in Konwitschny’s acclaimed production of La traviata with Seattle Opera. He also makes role and company debuts with Minnesota Opera as Rome´o in Rome´o et Juliette and Kentucky Opera as Belmonte in Die Entfu¨hrung aus dem Serail. He returns to Arizona Opera to create the role of Bern Venters in the world premiere of Bohmler’s Riders of the Purple Sage, Opera Idaho for his first performances of the title role of Werther and the Santa Fe Symphony Orchestra for further performances of Handel’s Messiah. Last season, he sang Tamino in Die Zauberflo¨te with Michigan Opera Theater, Alfredo in La traviata with Opera Columbus and Opera Idaho, Roy Dexter in the American premiere of Arizona Lady with Arizona Opera and Ferrando in Cosi` fan tutte with Ash Lawn Opera. Additionally, he joined Dallas Opera for its production of Heggie’s Great Scott and the Santa Fe Symphony for Handel’s Messiah

Joshua recently returned to the Santa Fe Opera as Jacquino in Fidelio and for its production of Rigoletto. Previously as an apprentice artist with the company, he sang Serano in La donna de lago, scenes of Eisenstein in Die Fledermaus and Ruggero in La rondine, in addition to joining the company for its productions of Arabella, La traviata and the world premiere of Morrison’s Oscar. He also recently sang Ferrando in Così fan tutte with Opera Naples and Frederic in The Pirates of Penzance with Eugene Opera.

The tenor is a previous apprentice artist of Des Moines Metro Opera. He was a district winner and finalist in the northeastern region of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and was the National Association of Teachers of Singing Singer of the Year in 2011 and first place winner of the graduate division in 2010. 

He holds a bachelor’s degree from Stephen F. Austin State University where his performances included Handel’s Messiah, Eisenstein in Die Fledermaus and Sam in Susannah.



Tara Faircloth, director

Stage director Tara Faircloth’s work has been seen in opera houses around the nation. Critics hailed her “incisive, tightly meshed direction” (Opera News) for The Rake's Progress at Wolf Trap Opera, calling it “a simple and elegant production” (The Washington Post). She directed two world premieres with the Houston Grand Opera's East+West series (The Bricklayer and Your Name Means The Sea) and has a thriving career in regional houses such as Wolf Trap Opera, Utah Opera, Arizona Opera, Tulsa Opera and Atlanta Opera (Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Rigoletto, Die Zauberflöte, Hänsel and Gretel, etc.). The baroque repertoire is of special interest to Tara, who made her directorial debut with Ars Lyrica Houston’s production of Cain: Il primo omicidio in 2003, and has since designed and directed a number of shows for the company. She has created productions of Dido and Aeneas for Ars Lyrica at the Festival de Música Barroca in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, and for Mercury in collaboration with the Dominic Walsh Dance Theater. 

This season, Tara is working on several new productions: Madama Butterfly with Wolf Trap Opera, L’enfant et les sortilèges with Utah Opera and Symphony, Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream with Boston University, and a reconfiguration of her 2014 Wolf Trap Carmen for Arizona Opera.  Following last year’s season, which included new productions of Il ritorno d’Ulisse, Eugene Onegin and Britten’s Midsummer, she is clearly in demand as an interpreter both for familiar works and those that are more obscure. 

Tara has worked extensively on directing staff with leading opera companies, and as such, has worked on some of the most complicated operas in the repertoire, assisting international directors and preparing cover casts of some of the best performers in the industry. She is increasingly sought out for her skills as an adapter and has created such pieces as the “Mini” Grapes of Wrath and the “Mini” Magic Flute, commissions of Opera in the Ozarks and Utah Opera and Symphony. She has a private coaching studio in Houston, and regularly works with the talented singers in the Houston Grand Opera Studio and Rice University. 


  Photo: Paul-Foster-Williams

Andrew Foster-Williams, bass-baritone (Don

Bass-baritone Andrew Foster-Williams enjoys a vibrant career on both the opera and concert stage and is graced with a vocal versatility that allows him to present a repertoire ranging from the classics of Bach, Gluck, Handel, and Mozart through to more recent masters such as Britten, Debussy, Stravinsky, and Wagner.

Andrew Foster-Williams’ career, initially built on his strong Baroque credentials, has in recent seasons found a new dramatic direction with successes as Pizarro (Fidelio) at Theater an der Wien and Philharmonie de Paris and a unanimously praised debut as Telramund in Wagner’s Lohengrin under esteemed conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin at the Lanaudière Festival.  A subsequent portrayal of Captain Balstrode in Christoph Loy’s divisive new production of Peter Grimes at Theater an der Wien alongside acclaimed performances as Nick Shadow (The Rake’s Progress), Gunther (Götterdämmerung), and Golaud (Pelléas et Mélisande) have further enhanced a highly regarded operatic profile.

Mr. Foster-Williams’ dramatic capacity has earned the respect of many of the most acclaimed stage directors as he “holds the attention of the audience with the energy of someone who has great experience, and with sensational vocal ability, which he uses with total freedom…” (Opéra).  He frequently is sought after by David Alden, Barrie Kosky, Christof Loy, David Pountney, and Deborah Warner.

An impressive line-up of concert invitations has taken Andrew Foster-Williams to major stages with the most celebrated orchestras and conductors of our day including the Cleveland Orchestra and Franz Welser-Möst, Philadelphia Orchestra and Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Salzburg Mozarteum with Ivor Bolton, San Francisco Symphony and Michael Tilson Thomas, Concertgebouw Orkest with Richard Egarr, Hong Kong Philharmonic under Edo de Waart, and the London Symphony Orchestra with Sir Colin Davis.

Andrew Foster-Williams offers a concert repertoire as diverse as it is broad including Bach’s Matthäus-Passion and Johannes-Passion, Brahms’ Ein deutsches Requiem, Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, Britten’s War Requiem, Haydn’s Die Jahreszeiten, Janácek’s Glagolitic Mass, Mahler’s Eighth Symphony, Mendelssohn’s Elijah, and Walton’s Belshazzar’s Feast.   Andrew Foster-Williams “opened the bass-baritone line not like a pompous oratorio singer but like a character in an opera – speaking to the audience, drawing us in, making the words mean something” (The Washington Post).  The professional esteem and critical success he has garnered have yielded collaborations with William Christie, Teodor Currentzis, Phillipe Herreweghe, Paul McCreesh, Cornelius Meister, Hervé Niquet, Vasily Petrenko, Ulf Schirmer, and Emmanuel Villaume among many others.

Boasting an extensive discography, commercial releases include Beethoven’s Cantata on the Death of Emperor Joseph II with the San Francisco Symphony (Tilson Thomas) released on SFSMedia, The Seasons with the London Symphony Orchestra (Davis) on LSO Live, and most recently, HMS Pinafore with the Orchestra of Scottish Opera (Egarr) on Linn.   Performances captured on DVD include the Gramophone Award winning The Fairy Queen with Glyndebourne Festival Opera (Christie).

Highlights of the 2016-17 season include a pastiche at the Opéra national Bordeaux on the occasion of the 400th anniversary of the death of Cervantes, Les Voyages de Don Quichotte, singing the title role in a staged survey of music written by Falla, Massenet, Ravel, Strauss under the baton of Marc Minkowski as well as Escamillo in a new production of Carmen staged by Kasper Holten on the lake at the Bregenz Festival.

On the concert stage, the artist is heard in performances of Bach’s Johannes-Passion with the Cleveland Orchestra under Franz Welser-Möst, Elgar’s The Dream of Gerontius with the Minnesota Orchestra and Edo de Waart, Beethoven’s “Coronation” Mass with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and Richard Egarr, and Mendelssohn’s Elijah at the National Forum of Music in Wroclaw, Poland under the baton of Paul McCreesh and with the Charlotte Symphony conducted by Giancarlo Guerrero.



Phylicia Rashad, narrator

Whether she is bringing laughter to millions of television viewers around the world, moving theatre-goers to tears, thrilling movie fans, offering new insights to students by teaching Master Classes at renowned learning institutions that include Howard University, Julliard, and Carnegie Mellon, serving on Boards of prestigious organizations, or breaking new ground as a director, Phylicia Rashad is one of the entertainment world's most extraordinary performing artists.

A native of Houston, Texas, Rashad graduated Magna Cum Laude from Howard University.

A versatile performer, Rashad became a household name when she portrayed “Claire Huxtable” on The Cosby Show, a character whose appeal has earned her numerous honors and awards for over two decades. She teamed up with Bill Cosby again on television as “Ruth Lucas” on Cosby. Currently, she has a recurring role as “Diana Dubois'”on the popular Fox TV series Empire and is slated to appear in the upcoming Amazon series, Jean Claude Van Johnson.

While television was a catalyst in the rise of Rashad's career, she has also been a force on the stage, appearing both on and off Broadway, often in projects that showcase her musical talent such as Jelly's Last Jam, Into The Woods, Dreamgirls, and The Wiz.

In 2016, Ms. Rashad was inducted into the Theater Hall of Fame, received the 2016 Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Leading Actress in a Play for her performance as “Shelah” in Tarell Alvin McCraney's Head of Passes at the Public Theater, and performed the role of George Seurat's mother in the highly acclaimed New York City Center production of Stephen Sondheim's  Sunday in the Park with George, starring Jake Gyllenhal.

On Broadway. Ms. Rashad has performed as “Violet Weston” in August Osage County, “Big Mama” in Tennessee Williams’ Cat on a Hot Tin Roof ( a role that she reprised on the London Stage), “Aunt Ester” in August Wilson’s Gem Of The Ocean,( Tony Award nomination) and “Queen Britannia” in Shakespeare’s Cymbeline at Lincoln Center.

Ms. Rashad received both the Drama Desk and the Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play for her riveting performance as “Lena Younger” in the Broadway revival of Lorraine Hansberry’s A Raisin In The Sun. She appeared in Ryan Coogler's Creed, Tyler Perry's Good Deeds, and starred in Perry's highly acclaimed  version of Ntozake Shange’s For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When The Rainbow Is Enuf.

Phylicia made her directorial debut at the Seattle Repertory Theater with August Wilson's Gem of the Ocean. Critics gave her first foray into the directing world rave reviews, saying "Rashad steers Seattle Rep's show with great sensitivity and understanding - for both the text and actors."

Of her work at the helm of The Ebony Repertory Theatre’s production of A Raisin in the Sun in the Spring of 2011, the Los Angeles Times hailed Rashad’s California directing debut by stating that she “...nails the play's rich humor in a solidly rendered production." She remounted the production at the Kirk Douglas Theatre in Los Angeles and at the Westport County Playhouse in Westport, Connecticut. Ms.

Rashad has also directed August Wilson's Ma Rainey's Black Bottom and Joe Turner’s Come and Gone at the Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles( 2014 NAACP Theatre Award for Best Director) and Fences at the Longwharf Theatre and the McCarter Theatre. She returned to the Mark Taper Forum in 2015 to direct Paul Oakley Stovall's Immediate Family.

Respected in the academic world, Rashad is the first recipient of the Denzel Washington Chair in Theatre at Fordham University. She received an Honorary Doctorate from Spelman College where First Lady Michelle Obama delivered the 2011 commencement address. Ms. Rashad conducted Master Classes at the prestigious Ten Chimneys Foundation for the 2015 Lunt Fontanne Fellows. She also holds Honorary Doctorates from Fordham University, Carnegie Mellon University, Howard University, Providence College, Morris Brown College, Clark Atlanta University, Barber Scotia College, St. Augustine College, and Brown University.

In 2015, Ms. Rashad received the BET Honors Theatrical Arts Award, Chicago Shakespeare Theatre's Spirit of Shakespeare Award, and the Inaugural Legacy Award of the Ruben Santiago Hudson Fine Arts Learning Center. Among the other awards that decorate her walls and shelves are the 2014 Mosaic Woman Legend Award of Diversity Woman Magazine, the Texas Medal of Arts, the National Council of Negro Women's Dorothy L. Height Dreammaker Award, AFTRA’s AMEE Award for Excellence in Entertainment, the Board of Directors of New York Women In Film and Television's Muse Award for Outstanding Vision and Achievement, Dallas Women In Film Topaz Award, Peoples’ Choice Awards, several NAACP Image Awards, and the Pan African Film Festival's Lifetime Achievement Award.

Rashad serves on the Advisory Board of the PRASAD Project and the Board of Directors of True Colors Theatre, the Broadway Inspirational Voices, The Actors Center, the Center for African American Studies at Princeton University, and the ADEPT Center which is steering the restoration of the historic Brainerd Institute.

Phylicia Rashad is also the mother of two adult children.


  Photo: Claire McAdams

Lauren Snouffer, soprano (Marzelline)

American Lauren Snouffer is celebrated as one of the most versatile and respected sopranos on the international stage.

Opera performances of the current season include two re-engagements. At the Théâtre du Capitole de Toulouse, she sings the role of Héro in Béatrice et Bénédict, and at Seattle Opera, she presents her highly acclaimed portrayal of Pamina in Die Zauberflöte. She makes her debut with the Badisches Staatstheater Karlsruhe in the role of Tusnelda in Handel’s Arminio. She recently joined an all-star cast to record the role of Teofane in Handel’s Ottone (Decca Classics). Concert appearances feature a return to the Cleveland Orchestra for Bach’s Johannes-Passion, Carmina Burana with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, a debut with the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra in performances of Mozart’s Requiem and Handel’s Messiah with the San Francisco Symphony.

Houstonians remember her Houston Grand Opera performances of Le nozze di Figaro as well as presentations of Carousel, Show Boat, The Rape of Lucretia and L’italiana in Algeri. Other highlights include Lyric Opera of Chicago productions of Rusalka and La clemenza di Tito, a Seattle Opera debut as La Comtesse Adèle in Rossini’s Le comte Ory and The Magic Flute at the Lyric Opera of Kansas City. She performed Max Emanuel Cencic’s new production of Hasse’s Siroe at the Opéra Royal de Versailles, with further performances in Budapest and Vienna; the project was recorded by Decca Classics.

Highly sought-after for her consummate artistry in contemporary music, Lauren has sung the role of Agnès in George Benjamin’s Written on Skin under the composer’s baton at the Tanglewood Festival of Contemporary Music, Gruber’s Gloria – A Pig Tale for the New York Philharmonic Biennial and Ligeti’s Mysteries of the Macabre with the Aspen Contemporary Ensemble. She will add the title role of Berg’s Lulu in an upcoming season for the Teatro Municipal de Santiago, Chile.

A recent graduate of the Houston Grand Opera Studio, Lauren Snouffer was a winner of a 2013 Sara Tucker Study Grant from the Richard Tucker Music Foundation, a Richard F. Gold Career Grant bestowed by HGO and a grand finalist in the 2012 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. She graduated from Rice University and The Juilliard School.


  Photo: Paul Sirouchman

Nathan Stark, bass (Rocco)

American bass, Nathan Stark, has performed on operatic, concert and recital stages throughout the United States, Europe and China.  

In addition to these performances, Nathan’s engagements in the 2016-17 season include Colline in La bohème with Hawaii Opera Theatre and Cincinnati Opera, King Marke in Tristan und Isolde for his Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra debut, Escamillo in Carmen with Dayton Opera, Sarastro in Die Zauberflöte with Madison Opera and Father Palmer in Puts’ Silent Night with Opera San José. His concert engagements include Defiant Requiem for his Chicago Philharmonic and Detroit Symphony Orchestra debuts, Missa solemnis with Pacific Chorale, and Verdi’s Requiem with Canton Symphony Orchestra and a New Haven Symphony Orchestra debut.

Nathan has performed with leading opera houses throughout the United States. He is equally comfortable on the concert stage. In 2005, he was the featured soloist in the nationally televised opening ceremony of the Air Force One exhibit for President George W. Bush, Laura Bush, Nancy Reagan and members of the United States Congress. He has performed at the Great Wall of China, the U.S. Colombian Embassy, U.S. French Embassy, U.S. Austrian Embassy and the Washington National Cathedral.  

His many prizes include Fort Worth’s McCammon Voice Competition, Opera Columbus’ Cooper-Bing Vocal Competition, Brentwood Westwood Symphony Orchestra Artist of Tomorrow Competition, Sun Valley Opera International Vocal Competition, Westwood Vocal Competition, Burbank Aria Competition, Palm Springs Opera Guild Vocal Competition, Pasadena Opera Guild Competition and the Opera Buffs Competition. He is first place winner of the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music Corbett Scholarship Opera Competition, the Classical Singers Association vocal competition in Los Angeles and was district winner of the 2006 Metropolitan Opera vocal competition, San Diego District.  

Nathan Stark holds degrees in vocal & opera performance from California State University, Long Beach (B.M. & M.M.) and the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (A.D.). His voice teachers have included Lewis Woodward, Cherrie Llewellyn, Shigemi Matsumoto, Marilyn Horne and Kenneth Shaw.


  Photo: Dario Acosta

Russell Thomas, tenor (Florestan)

An alumnus of The Metropolitan Opera’s Lindemann Young Artist Development Program and Seattle Opera’s Young Artist Program, American tenor Russell Thomas is fast-becoming one of the most sought after artists of his generation.

He regularly expands his repertoire and debuts key roles such as the title roles in Stiffelio (Oper Frankfurt), Faust (Michigan Opera) and Don Carlos (Deutsche Oper Berlin) as well as Turiddu in Cavalleria rusticana (Deutsche Oper Berlin), Pollione in Bellini’s Norma (San Francisco Opera) and Florestano in Fidelio and Manrico in Il trovatore (Cincinatti Opera). Russell’s previous seasons have also seen notable house debuts: at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden as Gabriele Adorno in Simon Boccanegra, Canadian Opera Company in the title role in Les contes d’Hoffmann and English National Opera as Lazarus in Peter Sellars’ new production of John Adams’ The Gospel According to the Other Mary. He has already earned considerable acclaim for his portrayal of Lazarus.

This season, Russell embarks on an impressive string of returns to the top houses in North America, including performances as Ismaele (Nabucco) at The Met, Pollione at Lyric Opera of Chicago and Canadian Opera Company, and Cavaradossi (Tosca) for LA Opera. In Europe, he makes his Salzburger Festspiele debut in the title role in La clemenza di Tito, in Peter Sellars’ anticipated new production conducted by Teodor Currentzis.

In addition to his work in the opera house Russell is in great demand on the concert platform and recent performances include Verdi’s Messa da Requiem and Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde. He is a regular guest with the New York Philharmonic and Alan Gilbert and will sing his first Loge in Wagner’s Das Rheingold with them this season. Elsewhere, he sings his first Mao in Adams’ Nixon in China with the Los Angeles Philharmonic conducted by the composer himself. In Europe, his concert appearances have included Lazarus with Netherlands Radio Orchestra, the role of Erik in Der fliegende Holländer at Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw and Donizetti’s Belisario with the BBC Symphony Orchestra., Russell is also developing his recital work and made his Wigmore Hall debut in the Rosenblatt Recital Series last season.



Rebecca von Lipinski, soprano (Leonore/Fidelio)

Rebecca von Lipinski was born in Mansfield and studied at the Royal Northern College of Music‚ supported by the Peter Moores Foundation‚ and at the National Opera Studio in London. Her awards include the Clonter Opera Prize‚ the Audience Prize and the Elizabeth Harwood Memorial Award.

Rebecca began a Fest Contract with Stuttgart Opera in 2011‚ with whom recent and future roles include Leonora in Fidelio‚ Tatyana in Eugene Onegin‚ Liza in Pique Dame‚ Míla in Osud‚ Thalie in Platée‚ Eurydice in Orphée et Eurydice‚ Fifth Maid in Elektra‚ Elvira in Don Giovanni‚ Third Norn in Götterdämmerung‚ First Lady in Die Zauberflöte and Chloé in Der Schaum der Tage (L’Ecume des jours). After her successful role debut as Leonora in Fidelio for Garsington Opera‚ she has since appeared there as First Lady in The Magic Flute and will return to sing Electra in Idomeneo. She reprised the role of Leonora with the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra at the Bridgewater Hall‚ Manchester. 

European engagements include LA Lola in Benedict Mason’s Playing Away (Bregenz and St. Pölten Festivals)‚ the title role in Micha Hamel’s Snow White‚ Oscar in Un ballo in maschera and Ursula in Klaas de Vries’ Wake (Nationale Reisopera‚ Netherlands). Operatic engagements in the UK include Leonora in Fidelio (Garsington Opera)‚ Musetta (Scottish Opera)‚ Karin in The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant (English National Opera)‚ Berthe in Euryanthe (Glyndebourne Festival Opera)‚ Countess and First Lady in Die Zauberflöte (Grange Park Opera)‚ Mimi (Mid Wales Opera)‚ Mabel in The Pirates of Penzance (Carl Rosa Opera Company) and Sophie in Flashmob for BBC Television. 

Concert highlights include Beethoven 9 with Manchester Camerata‚ Sibelius’ Luonnotar (Thomas Adès) and Harrison Birtwistle’s The Second Mrs. Kong (Martyn Brabbins) both with the BBC Symphony Orchestra‚ Carmina Burana (Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra)‚ Vivaldi’s Gloria‚ Handel’s Messiah‚ Mozart’s Mass in C and Coronation Mass‚ Rossini’s Petite messe solennelle and Mahler’s Symphony No 2.

Rebecca’s recordings include Fanny in Il Prigione di Edimburgo and Odetta in Emma d’Antiochia for Opera Rara.


  Photo: Walter Hill

Alfred Walker, bass-baritone (Don Pizarro)

This season, Alfred Walker sings his first performances of Wotan in Das Rheingold with North Carolina Opera and Méphistophélès in Berlioz’ La damnation de Faust at the Teatro Municipal de Santiago. He creates the title role of Josh Gibson in the world premiere of Sonenberg’s The Summer King with Pittsburgh Opera and makes his debut as Porgy in Porgy and Bess with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra.

Last season, he joined Oper Köln and Seattle Opera for one of his most oft-performed roles, Der fliegende Holländer and the Komische Oper Berlin as the Four Villains in Kosky’s new production of Les contes d’Hoffmann. He returned to Utah Opera for Amonasro in Aida. Alfred also joined the New Japan Philharmonic for Bluebeard in Bluebeard’s Castle and the Caramoor International Music Festival as Pizarro in Fidelio and sang Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and Verdi’s Requiem with the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra. 

A versatile concert artist, Alfred has sung Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 and Verdi’s Requiem with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Stuttgarter Philharmoniker, Utah Symphony, Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra and at the Sun Valley Music Festival. He has joined the Boston Symphony Orchestra for Rossini’s Stabat Mater as well as previously for Porgy in Porgy and Bess, the Grant Park Music Festival for Shostakovich’s The Execution of Stepan Razin and Elgar’s The Kingdom, the Handel and Haydn Society for Mozart’s Requiem, American Symphony Orchestra for Mahler's Kindertotenlieder and Rückert-Lieder, and Los Angeles Philharmonic and Toronto Symphony Orchestra for Porgy in a concert performance of Porgy and Bess. He has also presented recitals at the Manchester Music Festival. His recording credits include a collaboration with Semyon Bychkov and the WDR Sinfonie Orchester Köln for Orestes in Elektra on the Hybrid label as well as performances on Placido Domingo’s CD of Verdi tenor arias for Deutsche Grammophon.

A graduate of Dillard University, Loyola University and the Metropolitan Opera Lindemann Young Artist Development Program, the New Orleans native is the recipient of awards from the George London Foundation, Palm Beach Opera Vocal Competition, Houston Grand Opera's Eleanor McCollum Competition and the Sullivan Foundation career grant.